A young elementary school teacher in Pittsburg, California excites and engages her students to learn through the power of music. The art of music has always been known to unite – regardless of one’s racial background, ethnicity, gender, or age.
Every year, Ms. Mallari takes it upon herself to recreate a popular song in order to get her students ready to learn, and happy to be in class. Whilst putting a twist on songs, she makes sure to incorporate class rules and life-lessons to instill good behavior in the kids. Based on the lyrics and the highly engaged, participating class of youngsters alone, one can infer that these very same students are going to flourish into good citizens.
This month, Ms. Mallari happened to select a song called “Truth Hurts” by American pop artist, Lizzo. “Truth Hurts” is a song that has reached as high as number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, and is still lingering amongst the top 10 today. Despite the fact that the original song is explicit in terms of the usage of cuss words, Lizzo executes a meaningful message, and that is for one to know their self-worth; to not let a relationship rule your life, especially if the person you are with is not appreciating and treating you as they should. On the other hand, the Californian teacher’s kid-friendly version teaches students how to work hard, help and support others, share with others, and respect one another.
Most importantly, although Mallari’s lyrics motivates students to be on point, lyrics such as “…turns out I’m 100% that smart. Even when I’m feeling lazy…” lets them know that it is okay to slack off a bit because everyone has those type of days: kids and adults alike. It is all about knowing you are capable of learning new things, and successfully completing life’s everyday assignments. Ultimately, getting back up after set-backs and putting forth the effort in the work one does is one of the biggest lessons of all.
Dorothy Mallari and her class have already gone viral since the posting of the video below by The Pittsburg Unified School District.
It only took two days for this same video to go viral, with views amassing to over 250,000. As of now, the class video has gained over 1.5 million views. In fact, Ms. Mallari’s class performance got recognition from Lizzo herself when a twitter user by the name of Raj Mathai shared the video and commented “Best thing you’ll watch today. Teacher in Pittsburg (40 miles east of San Francisco) uses @lizzo to inspire and teach her kids. @PittsburgUSD @BayAreaProud.”. In response to this tweet, last week Wednesday, Lizzo shared the video on her own page. She wrote “Ur right.. this IS the best thing I’ve watched today” with a googly heart-eyed emoji attached at the end of the exclamation.
Last Wednesday, Dorothy Mallari and her students were warmly invited to perform their own version of “Truth Hurts” on Good Morning America. This televised performance took place on November 8th via video chat. When asked what inspired her song choice, Mallori stated “Its really important that I find a song that the kids know, they’re engaged in, they get hyped on. And once the Lizzo song came on for Kidz Bop, it played on our station, and the song came on, and the kids started grooving to it, and as soon as I saw them dancing to it, I was like ‘ohhh, i’m doing this song’…”.
Before the class performed on live TV, the hosts of GMA announced that someone has a message from them. That message was from no one other than Lizzo herself. Through a pre-recorded video broadcast, Lizzo greeted the class and stated “I saw the wonderful video y’all made, your teacher is very cool… I want to let you know that you are 100% the future, you’re so bright, and so beautiful, and so talented, so keep it up. And I hope to see y’all one day, imma drop in on your class so hopefully we can make that happen…”. This message was followed by delightful applause from the audience, and the second grade teacher and her students.
“Truth Hurts” : Ms. Malari’s Song transcript
“Let’s be great, cuz’ I know we are great. Wooooo!”
“I just took an ELA test, turns out I’m 100% that smart”
“Even when I’m feeling lazy”
“Yeah, I got math problems, that’s the student in me. Buzz, buzz then I solve them, that’s the worker [bee] in me,”
“You want to have a good friend, who’s committed. Help you with your homework, just a little.”
“You know I’ll hold you down, because you got my back. And that’s the sound, of the yellow and black! Ayyye!”
“Let’s be great cuz’ I know we are great. Let’s hurry, we don’t want to be late.”
“Choose a crate or a wobbly chair. Let’s take turns so we know it is fair.”
“In this class, you’ll never catch us fighting. Time’s up we need to start our writing. Smart spots make learning more exciting…”
“Bom bom bi bom bi dum bum bay.”